Scope Decision for 338LM - Poll

Discussion in 'Long Range Scopes and Other Optics' started by Rymart, Nov 6, 2008.

  1. Leupold MK4 6.5-20x50mm

    19 vote(s)
    14.1%
  2. Sightron SIII

    11 vote(s)
    8.1%
  3. Nightforce NXS 5.5-22x56mm

    84 vote(s)
    62.2%
  4. Other

    21 vote(s)
    15.6%
  1. Rymart

    Rymart Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    215
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2005
    The final stage of my 338LM project is to put the right scope on it. Here's what I am looking for:

    - Minimum of 20X on the top end magnification and good, clear, glass. I don't carry a spotting scope into the field and thus use my scope optics for rack evaluation, and more importantly to determine a cow elk from a spike elk from a branched antler elk on those special tags and seasons. Note that I only take a shot when I have identified the target 100%, the issue is how close I need to be to do that.
    - Light weight and compact (for a 30mm scope w/ turrets that is). The rifle is already heavy enough, I don't want to add any more weight and bulk than is necessary. I often pack in some distance and like to go as light as possible.
    - rugged, repeatable, dependable
    - Able to hold up to 338LM recoil (the current Leupold VXIII, did not pass this test and had to be sent back for repairs).
    - good warranty.
    - Plenty of internal adjustment.
    - A good milling or moa retical.
    - Good positive turrets.
    - Cost = A good value and the lower the $, the sooner I get to buy the scope... (my target is $1000 +/- $250)

    I've narrowed the list down to three models so far (but am open to suggestions for alternates). They are the following; Leupold MK4 6.5-20x50 LR/T, Nightforce NXS 5.5-22x56, Sightron SIII 6-24x50. At the moment I am leaning towards the MK4. Here are the pros and cons, as I see them:

    MK4:

    Pros = light weight (22oz), cost (vs Nightforce), good turrets, durable and battle proven
    Cons = low magnification spread, lower top-end magnification, glass (verses comparison reports against Sightron and Nightforce)

    SIII:

    Pros = Good reports on Glass quality, good magnification spread and top-end magnification, low cost (good value), repeatable, light weight
    Cons = Don't like turrets with removable caps (100% sure I will lose them), An 'Unknown' to me as I havn't actually put hands on a Sightron SIII, That I know of not 'battle proven' (will it hold up to the sustained recoil of a 338LM and other hunting related abuses?)

    NXS:

    Pros = Good magnification spread, Good reports on glass quality, 'bullet proof' reliability and battle proven, Great turrrets, the "Cool" factor, great reticals.
    Cons = Cost, Weight (at nearly 2lbs and 2/3lb heavier than the other choices this is a big issue), Bulky.

    WHAT SAY YOU, AND WHY?
     
  2. jwp475

    jwp475 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,595
    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2005
    Nightforce without a dought IMHO
     

  3. trueblue

    trueblue Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,127
    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2008
    Just carry 1 less pound of other gear and get the Nightforce. If the rifle is heavy, use an Eberly back. That will help some.
     
  4. Down Under Hunter

    Down Under Hunter Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    912
    Joined:
    May 10, 2007
    Personally I'd lean to the NF .

    DUH
     
  5. CS T

    CS T Official LRH Sponsor

    Messages:
    1,248
    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2004
    I know a lot of guys that use the Leupold and I like Leupold but I would recommend Nightforce. You can get a Nightforce with turrets to match the reticle MOA or MIL and to me this is very important. The Nightforce turrets are more positive when you turn them and to me the glass is better. I Leupold TMR is one of my favorite reticles. Both have great warranties and very good customer service.

    Mike @ CSGW
     
  6. Russian

    Russian Member

    Messages:
    7
    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2008
    NXS 5.5-22x56mm is too small. You could pass by with that but I have moved one step up to 8x32
     
  7. Boss Hoss

    Boss Hoss Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,843
    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2005
    I have 3 of those rifles (338 Slowpoke 338 Lapua variant) and do not like to have any issues internally plus must have World Class Optics. That being said I use US Optics.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2008
  8. Longshot38

    Longshot38 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    151
    Joined:
    May 3, 2008
    I say SIII. I love those scopes. The optics are on par with Nightforce and the price is right. I've used all three brands you mentioned and own two of them. I'll brake my comparision down like this:

    Leupold:
    I own the Mk 4 4.5-14x40 PR. It sits on top on my 300 Weatherby. This rifle is the newest one in my collection and has around 100 rounds through it. I have already had to send this scope back to leupold for repair. The customer service was outstanding but I still had to send it back before the rifle/scope hit 100 rounds. The glass is good but on max magnification you start lossing clarity about 1200 yards.

    Sightron:
    I own the SIII 6-24x50. It sits on top of my 7mm Rem Mag. This rifle scope combo has seen over 500 rounds and has yet to fail me. The optical clarity is much better then the leupold. The only complaints I have with Sightron is there lack of reticules I wish the turrets were a bit taller. I really wish I could get something similar to a TMR in this scope.

    Nightforce:
    I don't own one but I have used them. They are tough as nails but you pay for it in weight. The optics are excellent (except the occasional flukes in production), the turrets are outstanding, the offer an outstanding selection of reticules.


    Of all these mentioned I'm looking at three for my 338: Another SIII, NXS, or US optics.
     
  9. jwp475

    jwp475 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,595
    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2005


    I like the Nightforce of the scopes that you listed, but in the other category the S&B's and US Optics are at the very top of the heap and deserve consideration for sure. I know that I like mine a lot.
     
  10. CS T

    CS T Official LRH Sponsor

    Messages:
    1,248
    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2004
  11. Rymart

    Rymart Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    215
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2005
    Wow... This looks like its gonna be a landslide for the Nightforce NXS. I had almost ruled it out based on weight and cost, but now you've got me thinking again. Might need to consider saving my pennies for a little longer. Handled one at Sportsmans the other day - I see what everyone means about the clicks being very positive. The retical NP-R1 was cool. Not used to the 10 MOA per revolution vs 15 MOA.
     
  12. CS T

    CS T Official LRH Sponsor

    Messages:
    1,248
    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2004
    You will really like the Nightforce but if you do go with a Leupold you will do well also.

    Mike @ CSGW
     
  13. 4xforfun

    4xforfun Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,253
    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2007
    Gotta go with the flow on this one. NSX. I have a 8x32 NSX on my hunting gun. There are a lot of times I wish I had less on the bottom end when the cover gets thick, and I rarely use 32x. I usualy dial up to 22X so I can use the NP-R2 retical properly, espetialy when I dont have time to dial. Along with all of my dialups (400 - 1500yds in 25 yd incruments), wind chart from 5 - 30 MPH (5 mph incruments) from 300 to 1500 yds in 100 yard incuments, I have all of the impact point yardages for all of the hash marks on the scope also. I just drew a copy of the the retical on a buisness card and put the corasponding yardages by the hash marks. All of this info is taped onto the objective bell and 4" sunshade. I use the elevation where I hunt and look at the weeks upcomming weather (temp) and use that data on my software to get my dial-ups. I also have a pocket computer/Nightforce software setup, but the thing just don't like the cold. I also use a Kestrol 3500 weather station.

    I am driftting off point.......aren't I.................................????

    Sorry!!


    N S X
     
  14. Master Diver

    Master Diver Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    64
    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2008
    I had a NXS on my TRG-42 .338 LM, worked like a charm, nice rig. Get a good rubber strap like Quake and you will like the extra weight when you pull the trigger. Heavy and ruged is good IMHO.

    Cheers,

    Master Diver gun)

    [​IMG]